The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has revealed new regulations for IAAF label road races in the hope it will improve the quality of events.
They have also launched a new Platinum Label for the most prestigious races.
The IAAF label road races programme compiles a list of the world’s leading road races and claims that it ensures high standards in all areas are adhered to.
These include event organisation, compliance to IAAF competition rules, complete support from authorities for the event, commitment by the organiser to the advancement of the sport, and concrete steps in the global fight against doping.
The labels also categorise the best elite races and for mass participation events, the labels show where safety standards and runner experience is high.
The changes are due to be launched next year with some coming into full effect in 2020.
The Platinum Label will be awarded to races from 2020 which have met requirements throughout 2019.
The IAAF will now also be able to award five kilometre races with a label.
Athletes also have labels which correspond with the IAAF world rankings.
An athlete’s status in a label race, gold, silver or bronze, will be determined by their ranking in that event, allowing a runner to have a gold status in the marathon but a silver status over 10km, for example.
Athletes with gold status will be reduced, allowing for fans to become better acquainted with the world’s best.
All label races must have a minimum of six men and six women from the pool of athletes whose status corresponds to the label.
In practice this means that a Gold Label race must have at least 12 of the world’s 300 best specialists at that distance.
A change has also been made to the requirement that label races must have elite athletes from at least five countries.
In the new rules, the IAAF has remove that regulation and instead introduced a continental quota for Platinum and Gold races.
"This is a milestone for the IAAF and the global road racing community," said IAAF President Sebastian Coe.
"It’s a stepping stone towards 2020, when we will have an even more coherent structure of races, with better defined tiers to guide fans and athletes, and with integrity measures that are proportionate to the level of the competition.
"In 2019 we will be reducing the pool of athletes who hold the coveted 'Gold Label Status' to ensure the highest-earning pros are subject to out-of-competition drug-testing programmes.
"I’d like to thank the AIU (Athletics Integrity Unit) and Abbott World Marathon Majors for their guidance in this area, and stress that these changes are being introduced in cooperation with race organisers and athlete representatives, who have been very supportive all the way.
"A more robust regulatory framework for athlete representatives is also in the making.
"The principle that it is the duty of all the stakeholders in our sport to assist in the fight against doping is now widely accepted, and it’s the cornerstone of these changes."